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step further, or do not advance one step. Roman Catholics which affected the temThere is another subject, the coronation poral interest of states.
He should say, oath. It was the opinion of the vene. from all the transactions which had taken rable father of a noble lord (Kenyon) that place in Europe, that the power of the there is nothing whatsoever in ihis mea pope was no more than the shadow of a sure that interferes with the coronation shade. The great power at the present oath. It is only within a very few years day was mind aided by education--the that the argument has been revived: in- march of intellect, which was a security deed, it has never been insisted upon by against the abuse of religious power. He any enlightened opposer of the measure. If wished to advert again to the question, asked what securities he would propose ; What will you do with Ireland if you give the first security on which he relied was up this bill? Some said, Give education. this, that this measure will restore tran He said so too, but thought those who opquillity to Ireland. There were, however, posed the bill were enemies to education. strong securities given by the present bill At the same time he did not see that -the alteration in the elective franchise, education would relieve those in Ireland the oath required from Catholics, the sup- who smarted under exclusion from the pression of the Jesuits, but above all, he blessings of the constitution. No, they relied upon the soundness of the Protestant must remove the cause of complaint, or religion-upon the zeal, the learning, and resort to brute force -.to civil war. It had the integrity of the clergy.
been said, that if his majesty be graciously The Earl of Falmouth alluded to the pleased to give his assent to it, he would changes which had taken place in the go- forfeit his title to the throne. He would vernment during the last four years. He only say in answer, if there was one man would not pretend to say whether the pre bold enough to raise the standard of the sent government had been an expediency House of Savoy, he would find that the one or not; but certainly it had been a
throne of Brwiswick was fixed on a rock divided one, and an ambiguous one. The
not to be shaken. It was founded upon measure before the house had been con the free voice of the people; it was sup: cocted in concealment. The energies of ported by the continuance of one hundred the Protestant government had not been and forty years; it was sanctioned by put forward. The Protestant cause had forty successive parliaments; it was sanc. not been fairly treated. He wanted to see tioned by the voice of many millions of a Protestant lord-lieutenant, a Protestant people; and he was a loss to describe secretary, and Protestant law-officers in the contempt and ruin which must fall Ireland. A right reverend prelate had upon any man who attempted to impugn it. said that such was the state of Ireland The Earl of Mansfield would rather the that something must be done; but he question had been placed upon the ground would ask in reply, Was it necessary that of positive right, than upon that of expesuch a naked bill as that should be adopt- diency. In one case, it would have been ed? The same right reverend prelate (the a tribute to justice ; in the present, it was Bishop of Oxford) had also discovered, a surrender to fear. Arguments were ad.. through associating with RomanCatholics, duced as to the inconvenience of a divided that they were not idolaters; but that right parliament. He had always thought this, reverend prelate appeared to have forgot in a constitutional point of view, an ad. ten that he had taken an oath that the vantage ; and it was particularly so when Roman-Catholic religion is superstitious the House of Commons appeared to adand idolatrous.
vance too rapidly in the march of intellect. Viscount Goderich vindicated the sup. The House of Commons did not appear porters of the bill from the calumny thrown to represent the opinions of the people of upon them at county meetings, and in pla- England. Many projects for Catholic cards. One thing had greatly astonished emancipation had been before parliament, him—that both in the petitions and in the but he recollected none so entirely dediscussions on the question, the state of nuded of securities as the present. The Ireland, that poor country, bleeding, at
argument of the noble duke was a les every pore, should have been totally left
son to the Roman Catholics what course out of consideration. It was told them they ought to pursue. Let them conceal by Mr. Pitt and Lord Castlereagh that their designs until this measure should their claims should be conceded ; and if pass, and then, as soon as they choose, that expectation had not been held out, the pursue the same means which gave them Union would not have passed. In the view their present success, in order to ensure which the opponents of this measure took, the success of their ulterior objects. One they were in the habit of going back to the of the greatest grievances feit by the Irish transactions of the reign of Queen Mary. was the payment of tithes to the Esta. The true policy was not to examine who blished Church, while they had to provide was to blame in former times, but to cast for their own clergy. By admitting the a veil over past horrors, and endeavour to Catholics to office, they would be enabled soothe rather than irritate the public feel to seek to appropriate the church property. ing. It was in vain to refer to past ages, for It was always felt to be a grievance to pay the purpose of fixing principles on the tithes; but especially to a clergy who
were not their own. He was afraid the The Earl of Westmorland remarked, priests might encourage this disposition, The time has arrived when we must weigh and by the power of confessiou they were between distant and speculative danger able to controul the people. Between the and pressing and urgent mischief. Father Roman-Catholic church and the Protestant is opposed to son-brother to brotherchurch their could be no alliance; so that landlord to tenant : even the fair sex take it could not be made a part of the religion a part in the quarrel-and every body of the state, like the Presbyterian religion seems rife for discord and strife. We have of Scotland. If this measure passed, the passed a bill for putting down the Cathoendowments of the church would soon be lic Association ; but does any man supsurrendered to Catholics.
pose that it will be possible to execute The Marquis of Anglesea said, From that law in case of the rejection of this the moment you pass this bill, I shall measure? I had the honour of trying consider the regeneration of Ireland com very strong measures in Ireland. Then plete. The necessary consequence would our situation was different; we then had be an influx of capital into Ireland This
the support of Protestant Ireland and of would increase the value of land; it would united England. But what would be the diminish the rate of interest; it would case now if any thing wrong happened? open canals, drain bogs, reclaim lands, Two-thirds of the people of Ireland would establish manufactures, and cause all the be against us, and the greater part of the population to receive employment. Is, or landed proprietors; and a great majority is not the Protestant church of Ireland of the House of Commons. The people of in danger ? If it be, the passing of this England will not, I trust, suppose that we bill will strengthen it in the minds of the would force upon the sovereign a breach of people. In a time of profound peace, his coronation oath, or assent to any meaunder the exclusive laws, 25,000 men is sure affecting our Protestant establishbut a scanty garrison for Ireland; in the ments, or the frame of the constitution of event of war, it would be madness in any
the country; administration not to throw 70,000 men Lord Sidmouth said that the evils of into Ireland. Suppose this bill to bę passed Ireland were of verey long standing.. In into a law, declare war if you like the the language of an enlightened writer, next day ; and you will have no difficulty, these evils were poverty, depression, want within six weeks, to raise in that country of education, the relaxation of industry50,000 able-bodied, willing-hearted men, the want of proper protection for the who will find their way to any, quarter of poor-want of sympathy in the landlords the globe. The passing of this bill is --the distress arising from the necessity worth to the British empire more, far of paying tithes to the church, whilst they more, than 100,000 bayonets.
had their own clergy to support-rents After some conversation, the debate was
out of proportion to their means-want adjourned to the next day.
of the necessaries of life-and, above all, Adjourned Debate, Third Day, April 3. a distrust in the administration of justice.
The Earl of Guildford said that those Remove these grounds of complaint then; laws which it was now proposed to repeal make it the landlord's interest to attend were made to defend the church against to the wants of his tenantry-check rapine an intolerant people. If they were now - prevent violence, and put an end to to be overthrown, what was to become misrule. These were the first duties of of that church? There was a great dis a wise, considerate, and beneficent legistinction between the penal statutes and lature. The next — to give the people the exclusive laws. The bill was an in- education. The true benevolence of lefringement on the Bill of Rights. He gislation was not in granting Catholic would not deny the omnipotence of parlia- emancipation, but in carrying into effect ment to make or repeal laws; but he de- the necessary suggestions which had been nied its power to repeal those laws which made by former administrations. were a compact between the people and The Earl of Liverpool for twenty years the king, to which repeal the people had had a seat in the other house of parliainent, given no assent, without appealing first to and during that period had invariably opthe people by a dissolution. Their lord. posed Catholic emancipation. He was ships should not condemn their posterity now convinced that the adoption of the to slavery and superstition; and if there
measure, although it might not immewere any of their lordships who enter- diately tranquillize Ireland, and produce tained no fear for the safety of the church, an amelioration of its state, would tend to they should have compassion for their the production of those benefits; as, after sons and grandsons, to deter them from its adoption, other means might be retheir consigning them to all the horrors sorted to, which would be fraught with of religious intolerance.—Lord Lilford the greatest good. He had heard what contended, that there was no other had fallen from several right reverend remedy for the evils which afflicted Ire- prelates; but he must say that they had land but concession; and if they did not failed to convince him thať the Protestant grant it, they must establish military law establishment in Ireland would not be there.
placed in greater danger if things in that
country were left in their present position, of the Catholics from the enjoyment of all than it would be through the basis upon its enactments, the Bill of Rights itself which things would be placed by the mea has undergone numerous alterations since suure under their lordships' consideration. its first enactment. In the year 1807, As to the Protestant establishment in Eng: I, then holding the office of one of his land, it stood on much too high grounds, Majesty's principal secretaries of state, for him to feel the slightest apprehension brought in a bill
, under the provisions of for its security.
which concessions were made to Catholics Lord Tenterden would not yield to any entering the army, Does Lord Eldon reman, in his attachment to civil and relis collect the fury which was excited against gious liberty. He had all his life admired the government by the announcement of the Church of England. There was no that ineasure? Does he recollect the archurch so tolerant. His objection then to the tifices which were made use of to inflame proposed measure was, that in his opinion the minds of the people, and to impress the adoption of it would be to take the them with the belief that the safety of the broad and direct road to the overthrow of state, and the sanctity of the throne and the Protestant church. It might be said the altar would be endangered by this that in other countries different religions concession ? Does he recollect that it was went on smoothly and amicably together. declared if this oath was removed, and But was there any other country, either Catholics admitted into the
all in Europe or elsewhere, that bore any re
would be gone? The sovereign, too, by semblance to Ireland in that respect? In the same arts, was induced to declare, that Ireland there was an acknowledged Popish anyassent to a proposition such as that conhierarchy, assuming the names of the Pro tained in the bill, would be a violation of testant hierarchy established by law. Was his coronation oath, and destructive of the it not impossible but that there must exist liberties of the people ; and the result was, in such persons an anxious desire to obtain that the administration, of which I was a a restitution of the advantages of which member, became the victim of the poputhey had been deprived? The acts for lar arts resorted to for its destruction. the exclusion of Roman Catholics had been Another administration was formed, and frequently adverted to. It had been as formed too upon the principle of the sumed that the exclusions in the reign of strictest exclusion of the Roman Catholics. Charles the Second were introduced in 1, however had the satisfaction to find consequence of the wilful misrepresenta- those who profited by my exclusion, protions of Titus Oates. Though this might pose a measure of precisely the same debe true as far as related to the exclusion scription as that which they had denouncof Roman Catholics from parliament, it ed. I cannot too strongly express my was not correct as related to their exclu- abhorrence at the attempt that has been sion from all other offices. He blamed not made to circulate through the country the his majesty's ministers for the course idea that this bill cannot be passed withupon which they had resolved. He be out a violation of the King's coronation lieved they adopted it upon information oath: it is one of the arguments of the which they deemed to warrant it, although day, I know; but I do not see how it is the information laid before parliament possible for a moment to support such an did not support the necessity of the me assertion. King William had declared ditated change. He had felt it his duty himself in council as to the oath,--that it to express the opinions he had done, as only bound him to maintain the church as he conscientiously apprehended that the by law established, at the same time reconcession of political power to the Ca- serving liberty to the legislature to make tholics would only enable them to aim at what alterations they might hereafter ulterior objects.
think fit. This was the understanding of Earl Grey said, "I do not assert that King William on the subject; and, after those who may differ from me upon this this manifestation of the way in which he question are the enemies of religious liberty. viewed the question, it will be unnecessary They may think that other securities are for me to insist further upon this part of necessary for the church ; but it may be the subject. I admit that this measure will permitted me to hold that the best security give a power to the Roman Catholics; but of the church is not in exclusive laws, but in then it is a power which is an essential the purity and excellence of the doctrines ingredient of the British Constitution. of the Church of England. For my part,
The subjects of this country are the freest I can trust the Catholic upon his oath; and in the world, because they possess politiI am as much disposed to place trust in the cal power and civil rights. Take away assertion of a Roman Catholic as in that these privileges from any portion of the of any member of your lordships' house. people, and that portion will be slaves ; I have always contended, that the settle insecure against the insults of the government of the Revolution was founded on ment, degraded in their rights, and disthe principle of attending to the circum- tinguished as a separate and particular stances under which the laws were enact caste of society. I admit that by confer ed. Supposing, however, that the Bill of ring on the Catholics eligibility to office, Rights had contained an express exclusion and the right of having seats in Parlia
ment, we are giving them political power, the bloodshed did not extinguish them, but that political power is also a civil but has spread over the country into one right. They possess great power at pre- general conflagration. Besides, the Casent, but with the feeling that they are
tholics of Ireland do not offer an open restill unjustly treated. This being the case, sistance; theirs is a secret discontent, a their political power is not, as it ought to spirit against the government, which is be, used for the purpose of strengthening nourished until the opportunity shall offer the state. Those who are opposed to this to take advantage of what may be passing. bill talk as if the council, the bench, and This measure opens a happier prospect: it the parliament were to be in a moment will be, as a noble marquis said last night, overwhelmed by the incursions of the the beginning of the
eneration of freCatholics. I am sure, my lords, that if land. In spite of the calumnies circulated we have to believe this, it will be a mi- against them, his majesty's ministers have racle far greater than that of transubstan- established their claim to a debt of gratitiation. But if the Roman Catholics are tude from the country, which the people strong, it is ourselves who have been will be more willing to pay, than they really strengthening them; for it is we were formerly disposed to reward the who have united the Roman Catholics, by brilliant military achievements of the noble awakening in their minds a common sense duke." of the injuries they sustain. I do not Lord Redesdale opposed the bill. venture to say that this law will at once The Earl of Eldon said," I believe in give tranquillity to Ireland ; but I am my conscience, that the noble duke has
that without this law it is impossible made this proposition because he feels it to have tranquillity, or to be free from to be his duty to his country; but the danger. The noble and learned lord has people have been taken by surprise with said that one of its effects would be to this measure, which they conceive, and destroy the Established Church. The justly, affects their dearest interests and only fear I have ever had for the Church their best property. A letter of the noble of England, was from the impolitic laws duke to à Roman-Catholic prelate in which have been enacted under the pre December last, stated that it was 1100 the tence of supporting it. With respect to noble duke's intention at that time to bring the Church of Ireland, the great obstacle forward any measure of this kind. The to its triumph has always been that it has publication of this letter has been a great never been more than the church of a misfortune ; for it led the people to sink small minority of the people of Ireland into a state of apathy, generated by the and this, I verily believe, in a great degree persuasion that no measures would be owing to those very laws against which brought forward at any rate this session. we are now struggling. Take away the I do not at all reply upon the construction false protection of exclusiovary laws, and which some persons have put upon his the ministers of that church whose doc- majesty's coronation oath. I rather prefer trines are of superior truth and excellence going at once into the spirit and principle will prevail in the conflict of argument of the constitution as cemented in 1688.
Those who oppose this measure have The sentiment of the law as then cousti-
Dect:1 e nights
culated s hare
Djeople they the
has Eels it
and nobile ce ID t the bring
I thought it would injure the church, and deal with the people as they found them. on the same principle I mean to vote What did the friends of the Protestant against this measure.
establishment say ? “ We believe you to be Lord Plunkett remarked, “I shall address very good sort of people; but you cannot
observations more particularly to that have what you ask whilst the Protestant which is the more alarming position of the establishment exists." This was a destwo assumed by the noble and learned perate alternative to hold out to five or six lord-namely, that the bill is calculated to millions of people pressing for their rights. subvert the Protestant constitution in One word as to the Reformation. The church and state.” Without this measure noble and learned lord had stated that it the suppression bill would not be success was the established principle of the Reforful in putting down the Catholic Associa mation to exclude Roman Catholics from tion, nor would it give peace to the coun parliament and from offices; and theretry. The existing system interfered with fore it was that the oath of supremacy was every thing and disturbed every thing: it framed. Now the 5th Elizabeth did not entered into all affairs, it affected all ranks exclude Roman Catholics from sitting in and classes, it poisoned all enjoyment, it that House : and the reason was stated; put a stop to the ordinary intercourse be- because the Queen was assured not of tween man and man. So long as matters the religion, but of the loyalty of the Ro. remained in this state an Irish Protestant n-Catholic peers. Then the oath of on hearing of this measure, says at once, supremacy was a test, not of religion, but "What! shall a Catholic have the privilege of loyalty. Queen Elizabeth was a staunch of a Protestant? How can I be safe if a Protestant, yet she felt herself safe in Roman Catholic be associated with Pro- dealing with Roman Catholics. It was testants in the administration of the laws ?” her policy to gain the Roman Catholics ; But the Roman Catholic says, “ Am I and for that purpose she changed the Arsafe when the laws are exclusively admi ticles and the Liturgy of the Church of nistered by Protestants?” The answer is England, as framed by Edward VI., and quick, Oh, yes that is very good for adopted the communion service, to suit you -- quite good enough; but as regards the Roman Catholics, and to enable them the Protestants it is a different thing.” It to join in communion with the Protestants. was not merely Catholic orators, or per- Passages, containing an express denial of sons who might sit in parliament, who the real presence, were expunged; so that pressed for emancipation; the lower classes the form was such as would admit a Roalso felt interested in the favourable deci man Catholic to join in communion with siou of the question. During the last fifty Protestants. This was a fact; and for thiryears, the Catholics had gone on advancing teen years after the Reformation did the in numbers; and, looking at this undoubt Roman Catholics take the oath of supreed fact, he asked from what source was macy, and join in communion with the danger most to be dreaded ? Employment Church of England. Afterwards the Roand education were doubtless good in man Catholics became suspected, not on themselves; but the effect, leaving the laws account of their religion, but owing to untouched, would be, that if you made their supposed adherence to the designs Ireland three times as prosperous as she of the throne. The throne became first was at present, you would make her three disaffected to the liberties of the subject, times as dangerous. He had not heard any and from the reign of Charles the First other practical remedyoffered for the evils of the Roman Catholics came to be consiIreland. It had been contended, that if the dered as enemies to the state through Catholics were honest in the belief of the re their adherence to the king. What was ligion they professed, they must be hostile meant by saying that the law was conto the Protestant establishment. But an summated at the Revolution ? Did the establishment was not a principle of reli Bill of Rights trouble itself with all the gion, but merely a political institution, trumpery of the invocation of saints and which some thought had been unwisely transubstantiation ? No such thing. The connected with religion ; but he thought framers of that bill thought only of setdifferently, and considered the connexion tling the principles of the constitution so both wise and necessary. The Roman far as they had been invaded, and they Catholic would prefer the Protestant esta had not room in their heads for the conblishment, under which security was of- sideration of such things as these. There fered to his property, his family, and his were thirteen particulars stated by tbem, life, to the wild and chimerical attempt to in which the crown had violated the liberuproot the Protestant establishment, which ties of the subject, and they confined could only be done by shaking the foun themselves to these. The question had dation of the empire. The two countries been repeatedly asked, Was this measure must be separated before that establish- calculated to tranquillize Ireland ? He ment could be abandoned. The danger would ask in return, ought it to produce to the church was one which no human tranquillity? If their lordships had done power could effectually cure. It was im- perfect justice, let them take it for granted. possible for the legislature to make Ca that it would produce its due effect. If, tholics Protestants, their lordships must after the passing of this measure, the